A few weeks ago, Isaiah Phillips dropped off a box of non-perishable items to the Pearl City Outreach. “I told her they were just random things a friend had collected and I didn’t know what was in there,” Phillips said. The woman who accepted the donation told him, “At this time of year they have so many people needing food, they will literally take any canned good they can get. She also told me that a lot of the baskets they give away are to elderly people that only get fifteen to twenty dollars a month in food stamps,” Phillips said.

This was eye-opening for him. He and his mother Sharon went to social media, urging their friends and family to do what they can to help in this season of giving. “I can’t go to Hy-Vee or Walmart and buy food that costs less than that for one week,” Phillips said. He encouraged his friends to go through their pantries and closets to find items they could part with. He then volunteered to pick up the food and other items and deliver them himself so folks didn’t have to worry about going out in the cold or working it into their busy schedule.

“I don’t know what every situation is, obviously, but I can’t imagine being 70 or 80, probably having lost a spouse and running into medical bills I didn’t plan for when I was young, only to have a daily stress of where my next meal is coming from,” said Phillips. “So I started thinking, I’m off school next week, so I don’t have much going on during the day. Rather than veg out and watch Netflix all day like I had originally planned, I would like to do something to help these people.”

Phillips has taken many loads of donations to Pearl City Outreach, and is encouraging others to do the same.